Department of Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education


Date of this Version


Document Type



Presentation at University of Nebraska-Lincoln, CEHS Student Research Conference, November 9, 2013.


Copyright (c) 2013 Jia Lu.


Research Questions

1.What does inquiry-based science instruction mean to preservice science teachers (PTSs) ?

2.How do PTSs view the role of discourse in inquiry-based science instruction ?

3.How do PTSs structure a classroom discourse that supports teaching scientific inquiry?

This study finds that the meaning and the practice of teaching scientific inquiry could have a different emphasis due to PTSs’ own experience with inquiry and the nature of the class they teach. The two PTSs confirmed that discourse plays an important role in inquiry-based science classrooms, however, the degree to which they would like to have students talk about scientific ideas varies. Based on their video lessons, it is not difficult to conclude that teachers still do most of the classroom talking and oftentimes the talking is not supported by authentic inquiry experiences.